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Remus2004
Remus2004, Barrister
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 70520
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice.
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I own a top floor flat in a converted house. I also co-own

Resolved Question:

I own a top floor flat in a converted house. I also co-own the freehold with the owners of the downstairs flat. I lease stipulated that we are jointly liable for maintaining the roof and the foundations. Also,any subsequent damage relating from this. I am jointly liable for repairing the raising damp in the downstairs flat?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  Remus2004 replied 3 years ago.
Thank you for your question. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try to help with this.

You mean 'Are you jointly liable' I presume?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Yes

Expert:  Remus2004 replied 3 years ago.
Thanks.

It depends on what is causing the damp.

It also depends on the definition of 'foundations' and the definition of the building in the lease and premises which define repairing obligations.

If the foundations definition includes the damp course and the damp course has failed, then you are jointly liable.

If the damp course is not included in the definition of foundations, but is in what would be defined as "Structure" and you are not liable for maintenance of the Structure, you may not be liable.

Its quite unlikely that you are not liable, but to advise you further it would be necessary to study the lease in line by line in detail. Even then, it may not be completely clear and in cases like that it would have to be decided by the court.

Hope this helps. Please let me know if you need more information.

Jo

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

You wrote "Its quite unlikely that you are not liable", so there is a possibility that I am liable? Should I have the lease reviewed?

Expert:  Remus2004 replied 3 years ago.
Yes, there is a possibility because it depends on the definitions of the various parts of the building, and what parts of the building, you are liable for.

If it just says that you are jointly responsible for the foundations but does not say anything else, and does not define foundations, it would be necessary to look in the context of the rest of the building to see who is, for example, responsible for the walls and the rest of the structure.

It would be a good idea to have the lease looked at by a solicitor, but it may not give a guaranteed definitive answer
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Expert:  Remus2004 replied 3 years ago.

Thank you for the positive rating and remember that I am always available to help with your questions. For future information, please start your question with ‘FOR JO C’. You can also bookmark my profile http://www.justanswer.co.uk/law/expert-remus2004/